Bumble says boot camps are - and always have been - a good idea for top-class cricketers.
Last Updated: 29/09/10 2:21pm
I've been away on Mars for a few days, celebrating the end of the season.
I got back on Tuesday to discover Bert Millichip is the new leader of the Labour Party. He's done well since his days at The FA.
I see his brother Dan is there with him. A splendid combination, I'm sure you'll agree.
Anyway, I haven't been away on any sort of boot camp, but I think it's a good idea that the England players have.
It's always a good idea to go away somewhere warm to work on fitness and do a bit of team building at the same time. Keep on top of them. After all, this is what they do for a living and it doesn't hurt to remind them of that.
Of course, you have to build in down time and there will be a chance for the players to spend time with their families before the Ashes.
Strangely, it's exactly the same as what we were doing back in the nineties. I remember taking the England team on a few boot camps to all sorts of places: Spain, Lanzarote, Portugal and Yorkshire.
It was bloody tough. We'd get them up at 7am and work them all day, doing triathlons and that sort of thing. We'd take the second team and the emerging players along as well.
Of course, back then everybody said it was ridiculous and they laughed at us. These days, it's innovative and forward thinking...
Nothing to choose
I got two names wrong when I predicted the Ashes squad last week, but it came down to a toss-up between some of the players.
There was nothing to choose between Tim Bresnan and Ajmal Shahzad and it was good to see Monty Panesar back in the side. James Tredwell is in the emerging players squad, so he'll be out there anyway.
It's as good a squad as we could get. The only absentee is Graham Onions, which is sad for him.
His injury seems to be taking an extremely long time to heal, but I know he's a real determined lad and he'll be itching to get back.
He's a quality bowler, but this injury will be throwing him back and it will take a while before his fitness and his strength is back.
I'd like to give him a mention and wish him a speedy recovery.
Preparations are well under way for my theatre tour, which starts on October 26. Click here to see the dates.
And with no cricket to watch, I'll be keeping an eye on the football and the golf this weekend. Accrington Stanley have started the season well, although they seem to be the draw specialists at the moment.
And on Sunday I'll be joining the Brigadier and the Group Captain to watch the Ryder Cup. We start at 10am at the Penny Black for breakfast and Guinness and I get the feeling the day could end up like an assault course.
Lady Carr will be providing a saddle of beef, but it definitely won't be a refined affair. The Group Captain's in charge and he tends to hit you if you start slacking.
What could possibly go wrong?